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Thursday, September 20, 1917.
Mrs. Dunn gasped. Edwards, peer tag over her shoulder, breathed heav ily. "You are—their uncle?" repeated the lady. "Yes, ma'am. I'm Bije's brother. Oh, don't worry It's all right And don't fret yourself about me either. I'll set right down out here and read my paper and wait til! Caroline or Stephen get home. They're expectin' me. Mr. Graves, the lawyer, told 'em I was comin'.'" He calmly seated himself and ad Justed his spectacles. Mrs. Dunn step ped back into the library and walked to the window. She beckoned with an agitated finger to the butler, who Joined her. "Edwards/" she whispered, "did you Jiear what he said? Is it true?" "I don't know, ma'am." "Did Mr. Warren have a brother?" "I didn't know that be had, ma'am." "Do you—do you think it likely that he would have a brother like—like that?" "I don't know, ma'am." "Was Miss Caroline expecting him?" "I don't know, ma'am. She"— "Oh, you don't know anything! You're Impossible. Go awny!" "Yes, ma'am," said Edwards thank fully, and went. Mrs. Corcoran Dunn stood for some minutes by the window, thinkfag, or trying to think, a way to the truth of this astounding development. Finally ahe creakingly crossed the ropm and spoke. "Mr. Warren," she said, "1 feel guilty in keeping you out there. Won't you come in to the library?" "Why, thank you, ma'am, I'm all right. Don't trouble about me. Go right on with your readln' or sewin' or knittin' or. whatever you was doin' and"— So you are the late Mr. Warren's brother?" asked the lady, making her first lead in the game. "Yes, ma'am. His older brother. Bije was ten year younger'n I am. Mrs.—er"— "Dunn. I am an old friend of the family." "That's good. I'm glad to hear they've got friends. When you're in sickness or trouble or sorrer, friend ship counts for considerable. How are the young folks—Caroline and Stephen —pretty smart, hey?" "Smart? Why. they are Intelligent, naturally. I"— "No, no. I mean are they prettv well?" "Very well, indeed, considering the shock of their recent bereavement." "Yes, yes. Of. course. And they've moved, too. Movin's an awful job. They say three movin's are as bad as a fire, but I cal'l&te I'd rather burn up a set 6f carpets than pull 'em up 'specially if they was insured. 'Tain half so much strain on your religion I remember tho last time we took uj our carpets at home. Abbie—she's my second cousiii, keepin' house for me— said if gettln' down on my knees has that effect on me she'd never ask me to go to pruyer meetin' again. Ho ho!" He chuckled. Mrs. Dunn elevated her nose and looked out of the win dow. Then she ldil another small trump. "You say that Miss Caroline and her brother expect you," she said. "You surprise me. Are you sure?" "Oh, yes, fna'am I'm sure. When Mr. Graves came down to see me, last week 'twas, I told him to say I'd be up pretty soon to look the ground over. This is a pretty fine place the young folks have got here," he added, gazing admiringly at the paintings and book cases. "Yea," assented the lady condescend ingly. "For an apartment It is really quite livable." "Mr. Graves came to see you at your home, did he?" "Yes. ma'am: at South Denboro And he certainly did have a rough passage. Ho, ho! Probably you heard about it. beln' so friendly with the family." "Atoem! Doubtless be would have mentioned It, but be has been UL I hope Mr. Graves' errand was success ful." "Well, sort of so so." "Yes. He came to see you in con nection with your brother's estate some legacy perhaps?" She did not look at the captain when she asked this question, Therefore kardy fyJOSEPH LINiOLN •*'Just one moment more, ma'am. It was Rodgers Warren's children I was lookin' for. A. Rodgers Warren he called himself, didn't he? Yes. -Well, the A stood for Abijah that was his Christian name. And h« left two chil dren, Caroline and Stephen? Good! I thought for a jiffy I'd blundered In where I had no business, but it's all right. You see, ma'am. I'm their un cle from South Denboro. Mass. My name is Elisha Warren." Copyright. UU. by D. Applatoa A Ok I ens she did not notice the glance which lie gave her. "Um-hm. Somethin' of that kind. Mrs. Dunn. I can't help thinldr'," he went on. "how nice it is that Caroline and Steve have such a good friend as you to help 'em. Your husband and Bije was chums, 1 s'pose?" "No, not exactly. The friendship was on my side of the family." "So? Want to know. Your husband dead, ma'am?" "Yes," she answered shortly. "It It looks as if It might snow, doesn't it?" she said, changing the subject. "1 shouldn't wonder. Have you any children, ma'am?" "One—a son." The widow's tone was frigid. "So? He must be a comfort to you. I s'pose likely he's a friend of my aephew and niece too." "Certainly?' There came the sound of laughter from the passage outside. The hall dpor opened. A moment later Caro line, followed by her brother and young Dunn, entered the library. "Oh, Mrs. Dunn!" Caroline cried "I'm so glad I accepted your—Mal colm's— invitation. We had a glorious ride! I"- She stopped short Captain Warren had risen from his chair and was fac ing her. Mrs. Dunn also rose. "Caroling," she said nervously, "this" pausing on the word—"gentleman is here to see you. He says he Is"— The captain interrupted her. Step ping forward, he seized his niece's hands in his. "Well, well!" he ex claimed admiringly. "Bije's girl, that "Well, well!" ha exclaimed admiringly. "Bija'a girl!" I ain't seen since you was a little mite of a baby! Caroline, I'm your Uucle Elisha!" "Good Lord!" groaned Stephen War ren. CHAPTER IV. I A Little Business Talk. IF the captain heard Stephen's fer vent ejaculation he paid no atten tion to it. Dropping his niece's hand, he extended his own toward his ner'iew. "And this is Stephen?!' he said. "Well, Steve, you and me have never met afore, I b'lieve. But that's our misfortune, not our fault, bey? How are you—pretty smart?" The boy's face was flaming. He mum bled something to thp effect that he was all right enough and turned away without accepting the proffered hand. Captain Elisha glanced quickly at him, then at his sister. 1 "Well. Caroline." he said pleasantly. "I s'pose you've been expectin' me. Mr. Graves told you 1 was comin', ^didn't he?" Miss Warren also was flushed with embarrassment and mortified surprise. "No." she stammered. "He has been ill." "Sho, you don't pay I So you didn't know I was comin' at alL" "No. We—we have not heard from you since be returned." "That's too bad. I hope 1 shan't put you out any, drpppln' In on you this way. mustn't treat me is com p'ny, you know. If 'taint convenient if your spars room ain't ready iom after movin', or anything ot tl»»t kind, I can go to hotel somewhere for day or so. Hadn't I better, deo't you think?" Carollflh hesitated. If only they might have been spared this public humiliation! If the Dunns tad not been there! tt vas had enough to have this dreadful country uncle cook at all but to have him come now, before they were prepared, before any expla nations had been made! What should she do? Her brother, fidgeting at her elbow, not daring to look^ at Malcolm Dunn, "What does it all mean, dear?* Malcolm and 1—might be able to help you? We should so love to do it If you feel that you can confide in us, if it isn't a secret"— She paused expectantly, patting the girl's shoulder. But Caroline bad heard young Dunn's laugh and was of feudpd and hurt Her eyes flashed as ahe answered. "It's nothing," she said. "He has come to see us on a matter of business, 1 bflleve. I am nervous and—foolish, I spppose. Mr. Graves will see us *09#, and then everything will be ar ringed, Thank you for calling, Mrs. Dunn, aqd for the ride." It was a very plain hint, but Mrs. Dunn not choose to understand it augb. "You^re sure yon hadn't better tell •M the whole atory, dear?" she urged. "I am old enough almost to be your mother, and perhaps my advice might No? Very well. You know best, but You understand that it is something other than mere curiosity which leads me to ask." WILUSTON QIAFH1C who Be knew was thoroughly enjoying the scene, could stand it no longer. "Caro," he snapped, "what are you waiting for? Don't you know that the rooms are not ready? Of course they're not! We're sorry and all that but Graves didn't tell us, and we aren't prepared. Certainly he'll have to go to the hotel for—for the present" He ventured to rais^ his eyes and glare indignantly at the captain. Bind ing the latter looking intently at him he dropped them again and jammed hie clinched fists into his pockets. Captain Elisha pulled thoughtfully at his beard. "Humph!" he grunted. "Humph! Then I cal'late maybe"— He took-a step toward the door, stopped, turned back and said wlthvcalm decision: "I guess I'd better stay. You won't mind me, Caroline—you and St^hen. You mustn't. As I said, I ain't comp'ny. I'm one of the family, your pa's broth er, and I've come son\p consider'bk ways to see you two young folks and talk with you. I've come because youi pa asked me to. I'm used to rougliin it, been to sea a good many v'yages. and if a feather bed ain't handy I can get my forty winks on the floor. Sc that's settled, and you mustn't have me on your conscience. That's sense, ain't It, Mrs. Dunn?" Mrs. Corcoran Dunn did not deign reply. Caroline answered for her. "Very well," she said coldly. Step ping to the desk she rang a bell. The butler appeared in the doorway. "Edwards," said Miss Warren, "thif gentleman," indicating the captain, "is to be our guest for the present You may show him to his room—the blue room, I think. If It is not ready see that it is made so." "Yes, Miss Caroline," replied Ed wards. Retiring to the hall, he return ed with the suit case. "Will you wish to go to your room at once, sir?" he asked. "Why, 1 guess I might as well, com modore," answered Captain Elisha, smiling. "Little soap and water won't do no harm. Fact is, I feel's if 'twas a prescription to be recommended. Yoti needn't tote that valise, though," he added. 'Taln't heavy, and I've lugged It so fur already sence I got off the car that I feel kind of lonesome without it." The butler, not knowing exactly how to answer, grinned sheepishly. Captain Elisha turned to Mrs. Dunn and hei son. "Well, -roiil afternoon, ma'am," he said, "l1 I triad to have made your acquaintance, fours, too, sir," with a nod toward Malcolm "Your mother told me what a friend of the young folks you was and, as I'm sort of actln' pilot for 'em just now, In a way of speakin', any friend of theirs ought to be a friend of mine. Hope to see you often, Mr. Dunn." The young man addressed smiled, with amusement not at all concealed, and languidly admitted that he was 'charmed." When the captain finally departed, preceded by Edwards and the suit case, Stephen Warren threw himself violently into a chair by the window. Young Dunn laughed aloud. His moth er flashed an Indignant glance at him and then hurried to Caroline. "You poor dear!" she exclaimed, put ting an arm about the girl's shoulder. "Don't mind us, please don't Mal colm and I understand—that is, we know how you feel and"— "Oh, but you don't know, Mrs. Dunn," cried Caroline, almost in tears. "You don't understand. It's so much worse than you think. I—I— Oh, why did father do It? How could he be so inconsiderate?" "There, there!" purred the friend of the family. "You mustn't, you know. You really mustn't. Who is this man? This uncle? Where does he come from 7 Why does he force himself upon you in this way? I didn't know your poor father had a brother." "Neither did we," growled Stephen savagely. Malcolm laughed again. "What does it all mean, dear?" begged Mrs. Dunn. "You are in trou ble, I'm sure. Don't you think we— "Of course, I understand," said the girl hastily. "Thank you very much. Perhaps by and by I can tell you ev erything. But we muat see Mr. Graves first I—oh, don't ask me more now. Mrs. Dunn." The widow of so astute a politician aa Mike Dunn had been in his day could have scarcely failed to profit by his teachings. Moreover, she possessed talent of her own. With a final pat and a kiss she prepared for departure. After the pair had been shown out by Edwards, on the way home in the car Mrs. Corcoran Dunn lectured her son severely. "Have you no common sense?" she demanded. "Couldn't you see that the girl would have told me everything if you hadn't laughed like an idiot?" The young man laughed again. "By Jove!" he exclaimed, "It was enough to tnake a wooden Indian laugh. The old Jay with the barnacles telling us about the advantages of a sailor's life. And Steve's face! Ho, ho!" His mother snorted disgust. "Was it necessary to Insult him the first time you and he exchanged a word?" "Insult him? Him? Ha, ha! Do you imagine that a hayseed like that would recognize an insult without an intro duction? You don't Intend putting him on your calling list, do you "I intend cultivating him for the present?" "Cultivating him?" "Yes—for the present. He Is Rod gers Warren's brother. That lawyer. Graves, traveled miles to see blm. What does that mean? That in some important way he is connected with the estate and those two children. If the estate is worth anything, and we have reason to believe it is, you and I must know It. If It isn't It is even more important that we should know before we waste more time. If Caro line is an heiress, if she inherits even a moderate fortunes- She shrugged her shoulders by way of finish to the sentence. When Captain Elisha emerged from his room after a wash and change of linen he found the library untenanted. He strolled about, his hands behind him. Inspecting the pictures with criti cal Interest. Caroline, dressed for din ner, found him thus engaged. He turn ed at the sound of her step. "Why, hello!" he cried, with hearty enthusiasm. "All rigged up for inspec tion, ain't you?" ^Inspection?" "Oh, that's Just sailor's lingo. Means you've got your Sunday uniform on, that's all. My, my! How nice you look I But ain't black pretty old for such a young girl?" "I am in mourning," replied his niece coldly. "There, there 1 Of course you are. Tut, tut! How could I forget it You see, I've been so many years feelln' as If I didn't have a brother that I've sort (Continued on page 10) 4* 30AHAM Capital and Surplus $70,000 M. E. Wilson, Pres. Winfate, Vice-Pica. B. J. Schoregge, Vice-Pies. ^7^ THE NlVERSA'iyCAR COUPELET is a splendid up-to-date car for two— with room for three. 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